Elsmere Woman Charged With Animal Cruelty

Wilmington (September 2, 2021) — Officers from the Division of Public Health Office of Animal Welfare (OAW) announced the arrest today of an Elsmere woman on charges of animal cruelty.

Marybeth Stankevich, 64, was arraigned in JP Court 11 in New Castle on 106 charges, including:

·  49 misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty, four felony counts of animal cruelty

·  49 counts of failure to inoculate for rabies

·  One count of failure to remove excreta and food waste daily

·  One count of failure to store food and bedding protecting from spoilage and contamination

·  One count of failure to meet drainage and waste disposal requirements

·  One count of failure to maintain water receptacles in a clean manner weekly.

Stankevich was released on her own recognizance and is prohibited from possession of domestic animals pending a court hearing.

On Tuesday, the OAW’s Delaware Animal Services (DAS) enforcement unit responded to a complaint concerning the welfare of animals on the Elsmere property. DAS executed a search warrant to enter the property, where officers discovered 49 cats living in inhumane, deplorable conditions in the home. In addition, four deceased cats were found in the home. Code enforcement has condemned the home.

The cats were transferred into the custody of the Brandywine Valley SPCA, the state’s shelter provider, where they have been receiving care and treatment. Most of the cats are under-socialized, so the Brandywine Valley SPCA is seeking placement as working cats for most of the cats once they receive evaluations and any necessary medical care.

A working cat lives an independent life with basic care provided by the caregiver. Examples of working cat environments include barns, warehouses, greenhouses, churches and studios. Those interested in adopting should visit the Brandywine Valley SPCA’s New Castle Campus.

To report animal cruelty in Delaware, call DAS at 302-255-4646.

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Anyone who is deaf, hard of hearing, Deaf-Blind or speech disabled can contact DPH by dialing 711 first using specialized devices (i.e. TTY, TeleBraille, voice devices).  The 711 service is free and to learn more about how it works, please visit delawarerelay.com.

The Delaware Department of Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware’s citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations. DPH, a division of DHSS, urges Delawareans to make healthier choices with the 5-2-1 Almost None campaign: eat 5 or more fruits and vegetables each day, have no more than 2 hours of recreational screen time each day (includes TV, computer, gaming), get 1 or more hours of physical activity each day, and drink almost no sugary beverages.


Middletown Women Charged With Animal Cruelty  

 

 DOVER (August 20, 2021) — Officers from the Division of Public Health’s Office of Animal Welfare (OAW) announced the arrest today of two Middletown women on charges of animal cruelty.  

 Cheryl Joseph, 53, was arraigned in JP Court 11 in New Castle on 50 charges, including 48 counts of cruel neglect, and two counts of felony animal cruelty. 

 Amy Wood, 60, was arraigned on five counts of cruel neglect. Both were released on their own recognizance and are prohibited from possessing domestic animals pending a court hearing.    

  On Tuesday, the OAW’s Delaware Animal Services (DAS) enforcement unit responded to a complaint concerning the welfare of animals on the Middletown property. DAS executed a search warrant to enter the property where officers discovered 56 cats living in inhumane, deplorable conditions in the home. One cat was found in extremely poor health and was rushed to a veterinary hospital where it had to be euthanized. Another deceased cat was also removed from the home. Code enforcement has condemned the home.  

 “No animal should live in the conditions in which we found these cats,” said DAS Chief Mark Tobin. “We feel good knowing they are safe and will not suffer any longer.”  

The cats were transferred into the custody of Brandywine Valley SPCA, the state’s shelter provider, where they have been receiving care and treatment. Many cats have hair loss from severe flea dermatitis, several are emaciated, and some suffer from severe upper respiratory conditions. Despite their living conditions, the cats seem to be well socialized. Brandywine Valley SPCA is seeking adopters for the cats once they receive full evaluations and any necessary medical care. Those interested in adopting should fill out a form at: bvspca.org/cat-hoarding-adoption.  

“If you’re considering adoption, I encourage you to visit a BVSPCA shelter near you,” said OAW Executive Director Christina Motoyoshi. “You can make a huge difference in the life of a cat that was once so neglected.” 

 To report animal cruelty in Delaware, call DAS at 302-255-4646.   

A person who is deaf, hard-of-hearing, deaf-blind or speech-disabled can call the DPH phone number above by using TTY services. Dial 7-1-1 or 800-232-5460 to type your conversation to a relay operator, who reads your conversation to a hearing person at DPH. The relay operator types the hearing person’s spoken words back to the TTY user. To learn more about TTY availability in Delaware, visit http://delawarerelay.com.  

 

Delaware’s Department of Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware’s citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations. DPH, a division of DHSS, urges Delawareans to make healthier choices with the 5-2-1 Almost None campaign: eat 5 or more fruits and vegetables each day, have no more than 2 hours of recreational screen time each day (includes TV, computer, gaming), get 1 or more hours of physical activity each day, and drink almost no sugary beverages. 


Laurel Woman Charged With Animal Cruelty

LAUREL (October 8, 2020) — Officers from the Division of Public Health Office of Animal Welfare (OAW) announced the arrest Wednesday, October 7, 2020, of a Laurel woman for animal cruelty. Leona Long, 75, was arraigned in JP Court 3 in Georgetown on 77 charges, including 35 counts of cruel neglect, 35 counts of failure to obtain dog license, and seven counts for failure to vaccinate for rabies. Long was released on $37,000 unsecured bail and is prohibited from possession of domestic animals, excluding fowl and rabbits, pending a court hearing.

Last week, the OAW’s Delaware Animal Services (DAS) enforcement unit responded to a complaint concerning the welfare of animals on the Laurel property. DAS executed a search warrant to enter the property, where officers discovered 35 hound dogs living in inhumane, filthy conditions in kennels covered in feces and on tethers throughout the owner’s property.

“It was obvious the animals had been neglected for some time, and suffered tremendously as a result,” said Mark Tobin, Chief of DAS. “To see their tails wag despite such a miserable environment is incredible. These dogs now have a fighting chance for a better future.”

The animals were transferred into the custody of the Brandywine Valley SPCA, the state’s contracted shelter provider, where they have been receiving care and treatment for eye infections, foot and ear injuries, and malnourishment. The dogs range in age from 6 months to 9 years, and will be put up for adoption.

To report animal cruelty in Delaware, call DAS at 302-255-4646.

Note: A photo of Leona Long is not available.

A person who is deaf, hard-of-hearing, deaf-blind or speech-disabled can call the DPH phone number above by using TTY services. Dial 7-1-1 or 800-232-5460 to type your conversation to a relay operator, who reads your conversation to a hearing person at DPH. The relay operator types the hearing person’s spoken words back to the TTY user. To learn more about TTY availability in Delaware, visit http://delawarerelay.com.

The Delaware Department of Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware’s citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations. DPH, a division of DHSS, urges Delawareans to make healthier choices with the 5-2-1 Almost None campaign: eat 5 or more fruits and vegetables each day, have no more than 2 hours of recreational screen time each day (includes TV, computer, gaming), get 1 or more hours of physical activity each day, and drink almost no sugary beverages.


DNREC Natural Resources Police Make Arrests in Wildlife Animal Cruelty Case

Richard Bunting

DNREC Fish and Wildlife Natural Resources Police arrested Richard Bunting, 20, of Frankford on July 9 and two juveniles on July 13 and charged them with multiple deer poaching and with felony charges, following an investigation into a reported wildlife animal cruelty incident that occurred July 8 in the Hudson Road area near Gumboro.

The incident allegedly involved Bunting and two juveniles video recording themselves intentionally hitting a deer with a motor vehicle and continuing to perform cruel acts on the deer, which ultimately resulted in its death. Bunting and the two juveniles were charged with one count each of felony cruelty to animals, felony conspiracy second degree, hunting deer during a closed season, possessing or transporting an unlawfully killed antlerless deer, unlicensed hunting and underage possession of alcohol.

Bunting was arraigned via video with Justice of the Peace Court 2 in Rehoboth Beach and released on his own recognizance pending future court appearances in the Sussex County Court of Common Pleas. The two juveniles were released to their parents and are awaiting arraignment with Family Court in Georgetown.

Defendants are presumed innocent and are entitled to a jury trial at which the State bears the burden of proving each charge beyond a reasonable doubt.

The public is encouraged to report fish, wildlife and boating violations to the Natural Resources Police by calling 302-739-4580 or through the DENRP Tip app on a smartphone, which can be downloaded free of charge by searching “DENRP Tip” via the Google Play Store or the iTunes App Store. Wildlife violations may also be reported anonymously to Operation Game Theft by calling 800-292-3030, going online to http://de.gov/ogt or using the DENRP Tip app; Verizon customers can connect to Operation Game Theft directly by dialing #OGT.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities and educates Delawareans about the environment. The Division of Fish and Wildlife conserves and manages Delaware’s fish and wildlife and their habitats, and provides fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing and boating access on nearly 65,000 acres of public land. For more information, visit the website and connect with DNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contacts: Nikki Lavoie, nikki.lavoie@delaware.gov; Sgt. Brooke Mitchell, brooke.mitchell@delaware.gov

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Milford Woman Charged with Animal Cruelty After Dog Dies From Excessive Heat Exposure, Tethering

MILFORD – Officers from the Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) Office of Animal Welfare (OAW) arrested a Milford woman on Tuesday July 23, 2019, following the death of a dog that was tethered outside of a home during dangerously hot temperatures. The dog’s owner, 36-year-old Kimberly Sterling, was charged with one count each of cruelty to animals, failure to vaccinate for rabies and failure to obtain a dog license.

The OAW Delaware Animal Services (DAS) unit, which enforces statewide animal control and cruelty laws, responded to a report of a dog tethered outside in the heat on Thursday July 18, 2019. Upon arrival, officers found a dog tethered outside as described. The dog was tangled in the tether, had visible injuries, and appeared to be suffering from heat stroke. Officers were unable to make contact with anyone in the home.

Because the dog was in imminent danger, the officers cut the tether and rushed the dog to medical treatment. The dog died while en route. At that time, two other DAS officers had arrived at the residence where the dog resided and was able to make contact with the owner. During their investigation, officers learned the dog had been tethered outside for several hours. In addition, there was no evidence of shelter, shade, or water present for the dog. While on the property, officers also observed a second dog inside the residence, which was removed for medical evaluation and is being held pending the outcome of the cruelty case.

Sterling was also arraigned on Tuesday, July 23, 2019, and released on her own recognizance pending a court hearing.

OAW once again urges dog owners to protect their animals during excessive heat in the summer months:

•  Animals should have access to shade, shelter and water when outside: The best place for pets in hot temperatures is inside the home. If a pet must be outside in the heat, make sure the animal has a shady area and fresh water to help stay cool. The interiors of cat and dog houses can get very hot in summer months. To prevent this, ensure the cat or dog houses have raised floors, a large opening and ventilation, and are placed in the shade.

•  Dogs may not be left outside during an excessive heat warning issued by the National Weather Service. In Animal Services, animal cruelty, addition, dogs should never be left unattended outdoors for long periods. If the dog overheats or gets entangled or injured, no one will be there to help.

•  Pets should not be left in vehicles, even in mild temperatures: Animals kept inside a vehicle in warm or hot temperatures are susceptible to heatstroke. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), the interior of a vehicle can reach 89 degrees in just 10 minutes when the temperature outside is just 70 degrees. At 80 degrees outside, a vehicle’s interior can reach 99 degrees in that time. Temperatures will continue to rise inside a vehicle, and the AVMA states that cracking windows does little to help. Call 911, or Delaware Animal Services at 302-255-4646 immediately, if you see a pet left unattended in a hot vehicle.

•  Practice caution when walking dogs in the heat: The best time of day to walk dogs in summer months is in the early morning or late evening when the sun’s heat is not as intense. A simple touch of the hand to any surface where a walk is planned will tell if it’s too hot for a dog. If it’s too hot for a human hand, it’s too hot for a dog’s paws.

•  Pay attention to signs of heat stroke: Just like humans, dogs are susceptible to heat stroke in high temperatures, especially if there is high humidity, increased activity or little ventilation. A dog that is drooling, excessively panting, or unsteady can be showing signs of heat stroke, which can be life-threatening. Seek immediate veterinary attention if your dog has become over-heated and is showing any of these symptoms.

For more information, visit https://animalservices.delaware.gov/ or https://www.avma.org/public/PetCare/Pages/Warm-Weather-Pet-Safety.aspx.

A person who is deaf, hard-of-hearing, deaf-blind or speech-disabled can call the DPH phone number above by using TTY services. Dial 7-1-1 or 800-232-5460 to type your conversation to a relay operator, who reads your conversation to a hearing person at DPH. The relay operator types the hearing person’s spoken words back to the TTY user. To learn more about TTY availability in Delaware, visit http://delawarerelay.com.

The Delaware Department of Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware’s citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations. DPH, a division of DHSS, urges Delawareans to make healthier choices with the 5-2-1 Almost None campaign: eat 5 or more fruits and vegetables each day, have no more than 2 hours of recreational screen time each day (includes TV, computer, gaming), get 1 or more hours of physical activity each day (includes TV, computer, gaming), get 1 or more hours of physical activity each day, and drink almost no sugary beverages.